16 Jul 2020

In episode six of ‘Talking European Rugby League’ we meet Ian Thompson, the original and central figure in the development of Rugby League in Netherlands. Originally from Cumbria, Ian recalls how a legendary figure of the sport (somebody who is part of the Rugby League statue at Wembley) initially got him into the game. He charts the ups and downs of developing the game in Netherlands, some of the early visiting teams and the tours out made by the Dutch sides. Ian recalls the occasion when Netherlands played Georgia in Tbilisi and explains why prior to that, his wife received a call from the First Lady of Georgia. With the Rugby League World Cup 2008 being the first ever one to have qualifying matches to it, Ian reveals the name of the very first World Cup Qualifying try-scorer (and, yes, he was Dutch!)